Big inning propels fastpitchers

Spartan pitcher Karen Robinson went the distance for the Spartans, striking out three to even her season record at 2-2.  - JESSE BEALS/Staff Photo
Spartan pitcher Karen Robinson went the distance for the Spartans, striking out three to even her season record at 2-2.
— image credit: JESSE BEALS/Staff Photo

Clutch hitting by Chelsea Baker and Karen Robinson earns a 6-4 victory.

The Spartan fastpitch team showed some rust, but got it done in their game on Wednesday.

Stephanie Wagner and Karen Robinson each went 2-for-4 at the plate as the Spartans scored all their runs in the fifth inning, then held off a late rally to defeat the Olympic Trojans 6-4 at Linder Field in Silverdale for their third straight win.

Head coach Liz McCloskey was pleased with how her team handled themselves after spring vacation.

“We got off to a slow start,” she said. “We had some errors and some miscommunication out there, but it just takes some adjustment. These girls are ready to play again. They did an outstanding job coming back from the break and getting the win.”

Robinson also went the entire game on the mound, walking just one and striking out three to even her record to 2-2.

It looked like a pitcher’s duel early, and the teams traded goose eggs until the second inning when the Trojans scored. The Spartans had a chance to answer in the third, but sophomore catcher Tabitha Mabrey struck out with the bases loaded.

Olympic could have extended their lead in the fourth, but Katie Longmire hit one back to Robinson, who quickly threw to Wagner at first base to double up Heather Kennedy and end the threat.

In the fifth, the Spartans finally got on track with the bats.

Chelsea Hansen and Jamie Huggler singled, then Anna Lyons hit a comebacker to pitcher Katelyn Shaw, who threw out Hansen at third.

Chelsea Baker – who started the game in center field for Kelcee Azure, a late scratch due to illness – then blooped one into right field, scoring Huggler.

Robinson then laced one into center field, followed by Mabry, who hit a grounder just past Kennedy’s glove into left field to score Lyons and Baker.

Wagner then hit a fly ball that just missed clearing the center field fence, scoring Robinson and Mabrey. Amanda Szarzynski singled back up the middle, scoring Wagner.

Olympic didn’t threaten again until the seventh. After Robinson got Sara Messing to ground one back to the mound, Sarah Varady reached base on an error when Huggler dropped the fly ball.

Candice Cruz singled, then Lindsey Webel hit a double, scoring Varady and Cruz and cutting the lead to 6-3.

Robinson got pinch hitter Ashlee Wheeler to strike out, but Longmire hit an infield single, scoring Webel. Pinch hitter Rice fouled off several pitches to keep the Trojans in the game, but she finally succumbed, softly lining one into junior third baseman Marci Morford’s glove for the final out.

The Spartans are in for a battle next week. After their game against North Kitsap yesterday, they get into Metro League play with four games in five days.

“It’s going to be a big test,” McCloskey said. “We’re going to have to be ready every day and stay consistent the way we have in our past three wins.”

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